DM Design – The Architecture of Scottish cities

The architecture of Scotland is beautiful and diverse, with each of its cities’ landscapes offering an insight into the history. What historic and architectural highlights should you look out for when visiting Sottish cities? Home design specialists DM Design has taken a look:


The Old Town

Before the Act of Union in 1707, Edinburgh was a street lined with small lanes. Houses were tenement buildings – tall, cramped and unsafe – and people socialised in inns and alehouses. This is now Edinburgh’s Old Town.

National Gallery of Scotland

Designed by William Henry Playfair, who was instrumental in Edinburgh Enlightenment, this has a classical Greek revival style, earning Edinburgh its nickname of ‘Athens of the North’.

The New Town

The New Town was proposed in 1752, has symmetrical streets lined with terraced houses. The designs also included large, incorporated gardens, shopping centres and green spaces.


Glasgow Cathedral

Constructed in 1197, this cathedral is still in use today. Its Medieval style is very synonymous with the time.

Post-war housing

After the war, Glasgow suffered a crash and demolition of the city was considered. Instead, Glasgow became a hub of regeneration, with modern-era estates and high-rise housing.

Works of Charles Rennie Mackintosh

During the 19th Century, Charles Rennie Mackintosh transformed the landscape of architecture and design. Mackintosh designed ornamental, historical and eclectic buildings, such as the Glasgow Herald Building, Glasgow School of Art commission and Walter Blackie’s ‘The Hill House’ family home.


Provost Skene’s House

One of the city’s few examples of the pre-industrial use of granite, here it’s incorporated into rubble walling, and sandstone is used for decorations.

Tenements around the Rosemount Viaduct

Built to improve the city, the tenements were made of granite, and have parapets and towers typical of the period.

No 50. Queen’s Road

An impressive example of domestic architecture, No. 50 Queen’s Road was designed by J. B. Pirie.

Rosemount Square

Check out Art Deco style in Aberdeen in Rosemount Square’s circular housing block. It’s a stunning mixture of modernity and tradition.


Inverness Castle

In the 12th century, King David settled and built Inverness Castle – changing it from a simple wooden fort into stone.

Abertarff House

The longest surviving house in Inverness, built in 1593, was owned by the Frasers of Lovat. One key feature is corbie steps – known as crow-stepped gables – often associated with Danish medieval churches.

Balnain House

Built around 1726, Balnain House has early-Georgian characteristics, with a great deal of symmetry and an imposing appearance. The National Trust for Scotland now use it as their offices.



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January 27, 2017